Some good news, some bad news on the vaccination front: HPV, meningitis and Tdap

vaccinationTeen vaccination rates are all over the board, according to the CDC. In order to assess vaccination rates, researchers from the CDC looked at data for almost 20 thousand adolescents obtained from phone interviews with parents or guardians.

They found that about 85 percent of adolescents ages 13 through 17 had been administered at least one dose of the tetanus, diphtheria, and acellular pertussis (Tdap) vaccine, an increase of about 6 percent compared to 2011. Researchers also found that 74 percent of those adolescents had been given one dose of the meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MenACWY), almost reaching the Healthy People 2020 goal of 80 percent. However, numbers were bleaker for the HPV vaccine. Vaccination rates among teenage girls remained unchanged from 2011, and those girls getting all three shots decreased slightly from 34.8 percent to 33.4 percent.

Other trends noted include that vaccination rates vary between states. Tdap vaccination rates ranged from about 54 percent in Mississippi to 96 percent in New Hampshire. Meningococcal conjugate vaccine rates ranged from about 38 percent in Arkansas to 94 percent in Rhode Island. HPV vaccination rates were highest in Rhode Island as well, with about 58 percent of girls and 18 percent of boys getting all three doses.

Report writers from the CDC concluded that achieving high vaccination coverage among adolescents is feasible, and progress is evident for most vaccines. And ACSH s Ariel Savransky adds, Some of these numbers are very promising. But it seems imperative to focus vaccination efforts in certain states where rates may not be as high. And we in public health must also continue to push to make the HPV vaccination more widely used among teenage girls and boys, as this vaccine has the potential to accomplish widespread protection from HPV and lead to a major decline in certain types of cancers.